• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Frontispiece
 Title Page
 Dedication
 Table of Contents
 List of Illustrations
 Introduction
 Ella's Dream
 Tea in the Woods
 Joe Gurgles
 A Mouse's Wedding
 Chatty's Adventures
 To-morrow Morning
 A Doll's Dilemma
 A Bell's Story
 Works by Charlotte M. Yonce
 Catalogue of Works
 Golden Treasury Series
 Globe Library
 Back Cover
 Spine






Title: Ribbon stories
CITATION PAGE TURNER PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00026292/00001
 Material Information
Title: Ribbon stories
Physical Description: viii, 1, 242, 2, 59 p., 4 leaves of plates : ill. ; 18 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Murray, C. O ( Illustrator )
Macmillan & Co ( Publisher )
R. Clay, Sons, and Taylor ( Printer )
Publisher: Macmillan
Place of Publication: London
Manufacturer: R. Clay, Sons, and Taylor
Publication Date: 1872
 Subjects
Subject: Children -- Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Children's stories   ( lcsh )
Children's stories -- 1872   ( lcsh )
Publishers' catalogues -- 1872   ( rbgenr )
Bldn -- 1872
Genre: Children's stories   ( lcsh )
Publishers' catalogues   ( rbgenr )
novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: England -- London
 Notes
Statement of Responsibility: by Lady Barker ; illustrated by C.O. Murray.
General Note: Publisher's catalogue follows text.
Funding: Preservation and Access for American and British Children's Literature, 1870-1889 (NEH PA-50860-00).
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00026292
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: Baldwin Library of Historical Children's Literature in the Department of Special Collections and Area Studies, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002221870
notis - ALG2100
oclc - 58796329

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Front Matter
        Front Matter 1
        Front Matter 2
    Frontispiece
        Frontispiece
    Title Page
        Title Page
    Dedication
        Dedication
    Table of Contents
        Table of Contents 1
        Table of Contents 2
    List of Illustrations
        List of Illustrations
    Introduction
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
    Ella's Dream
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Illustration 1
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
    Tea in the Woods
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Illustration 2
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
    Joe Gurgles
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
    A Mouse's Wedding
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
        Page 116
        Page 117
        Page 118
        Page 119
        Page 120
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
        Page 128
        Page 129
        Page 130
        Page 131
        Page 132
        Page 133
    Chatty's Adventures
        Page 134
        Page 135
        Page 136
        Page 137
        Page 138
        Page 139
        Page 140
        Page 141
        Page 142
        Page 143
        Page 144
        Page 145
        Page 146
        Page 147
        Page 148
        Page 149
        Page 150
        Page 151
        Page 152
        Illustration 3
        Page 153
        Page 154
        Page 155
        Page 156
        Page 157
        Page 158
        Page 159
        Page 160
        Page 161
    To-morrow Morning
        Page 162
        Page 163
        Page 164
        Page 165
        Page 166
        Page 167
        Page 168
        Page 169
        Page 170
        Page 171
        Page 172
        Page 173
        Page 174
    A Doll's Dilemma
        Page 175
        Page 176
        Page 177
        Page 178
        Page 179
        Page 180
        Page 181
        Page 182
        Page 183
        Page 184
        Page 185
        Page 186
        Page 187
        Page 188
        Page 189
        Page 190
        Page 191
        Page 192
        Page 193
        Page 194
        Page 195
        Page 196
        Page 197
        Page 198
        Page 199
        Page 200
        Page 201
        Page 202
        Page 203
    A Bell's Story
        Page 204
        Page 205
        Page 206
        Page 207
        Page 208
        Page 209
        Page 210
        Page 211
        Page 212
        Page 213
        Page 214
        Page 215
        Page 216
        Page 217
        Page 218
        Page 219
        Page 220
        Page 221
        Page 222
        Page 223
        Page 224
        Page 225
        Page 226
        Page 227
        Page 228
        Page 229
        Page 230
        Page 231
        Page 232
        Page 233
        Page 234
        Page 235
        Page 236
        Page 237
        Page 238
        Page 239
        Page 240
        Page 241
        Page 242
    Works by Charlotte M. Yonce
        Works 1
        Works 2
    Catalogue of Works
        Works 3
        Works 4
        Works 5
        Works 6
        Works 7
        Works 8
        Works 9
        Works 10
        Works 11
        Works 12
        Works 13
        Works 14
        Works 15
        Works 16
        Works 17
        Works 18
        Works 19
        Works 20
        Works 21
        Works 22
        Works 23
        Works 24
        Works 25
        Works 26
        Works 27
        Works 28
        Works 29
        Works 30
        Works 31
        Works 32
        Works 33
        Works 34
        Works 35
        Works 36
        Works 37
        Works 38
        Works 39
        Works 40
        Works 41
        Works 42
        Works 43
        Works 44
        Works 45
        Works 46
        Works 47
        Works 48
        Works 49
        Works 50
    Golden Treasury Series
        Works 51
        Works 52
        Works 53
        Works 54
    Globe Library
        Works 55
        Works 56
        Works 57
        Works 58
        Works 59
        Works 60
        Works 61
    Back Cover
        Back Cover 1
        Back Cover 2
    Spine
        Spine
Full Text











































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RIBBON


STORIES.


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RIBBON


LADY


S


TORIE


BARKER,


AUTHUI OM F STORI S A()UT L-E \CHRISTMAS CAKE, 1I"UL.

ILLUSTRATED BYI C. (. MURRAY.


MACMILLAN AND


CO.


S.


187.,.


Xallbon :

























TO

ETHEL STREATFEILD,


TrIE REAL LITTLE


RIBBON STORY-TELLER.
























CONTENTS.


N'IODUCTORY . .



CHAPTER I.


ELLA'S DREAM


4 40 6a 9 S0 a 4 & 0 & 0


CHAP TER II.


TEA IN THE WOODS


. .


a S S S S


CHAPTER III.


JOE GURGLES . .



CHAPTER IV.


A MOUSE'S WEDDING .


9 5 5 S S 5


CHAPTER V.


CHATTY'S ADVENTURES .


a & 0 a


. .


PAG H
I


S 13


40


101


134











CON TE NTS.


CHAPTER VI.


TO-MORROW MORNING


PAGE
S. 162


CHAPTER VII.


A DOLL'S DILEMMA .


0 0 0 0


0 0 0 0 0 0


CHAPTER VIII.


A BELL'S STORY . .


& & a a a


viii


I75


204


_ ___


~ ~I__
























LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.


PAGE


GURGLES


RIBBON STORY-TELLER.


ELLA'S DREAM .


TEA IN THE WOODS. .


CHATTY'S ADVENTURES.


. . VignZete.


S . 23


* .* .62


a 0 0 & f 0 V 153


JOE


. . . Front.


















RIBBON STORIES.


INTRODUCTORY.

ETHEL lived by herself in a great lonely house.
When I say by herself, I mean as far as her
real, inner self was concerned, what she used to
call-me, my own self. There were plenty of
other people in the house; first, her papa and
mamma, who were very fond of their only little
girl, and next a couple of great schoolboy
brothers. They were fond of her too; that is
to say, they would have punched any other boy's
head who tried to bully her; and they brought
her the earliest birds' eggs, and made it a point
of showing to her first all their most delightful
B









RIBBON STORIES.


and messy discoveries in


fields.


But Ethel was


the garden or in


such a curious little


that, instead of growing rather


which is what


often


like a boy herself,


happens to the only


sister


in


a home


herself care


full of b
for what


tOys,


she never could make


her brothers liked ;


ferrets,


for instance, or pet snakes.


She did not


enjoy going round the haystacks or into


even


the barn


with the


ratcatcher,


which


Ralph


and Oswald


thought the most exciting


and delightful


enter-


tainment in the world.


As for the birds' eggs, she


shed tears over them as soon as her


brothers'


backs were turned,


to bring


her any more.


and implored the


Then she


boys
W


did not


for seeing mice turned out of the trap


cat to catch; nor could


she


see the fun of watching the tame


for the


even be brought


to


magpie chevy-


ing a


frog round the garden.


This was Ralph's


favourite diversion: to catch a


to the magpie.
to make tracks


frog


and show it


Of course the frog commenced


directly for the


the
girl


not
care


nearest pond,









INTROD UCTOR Y. 3


and Mag would hop


after it, prodding


with her bill.


At each sharp dig


to scream exactly like


would laugh until he


a young bird;


cried


the frog


used


and Ralph


again, assuring


Ethel,


v ho was
was only


in dire


Mag's


distress all


the time,


fun, and that the


frog


that it


did


not


mind it


a bit.


In spite, however, of the little girl's tender heart,


which


refused


to find pleasure in gratifying


careless


curiosity-the


real


secret


of


a boy's


cruelty-she was so unselfish and sweet-tempered,


that although


Ethel was


her brothers


such a


muff!"


said
they


"It was a pity


were


very


fond


of her, and agreed


that "with


it all she wasn't a


bit of
highest


a coward,"


which


praise they could


they considered


bestow.


the


Ethel had


plenty of
a couple


always


generally


outdoor amusements,


her


pony,


of square yards of garden, which


going


to be


something


wonderful,


appeared to visitors as if it had


and
was
but
been


freshly dug only that morning: her doves, rabbits,


B2


on


that









RIBBON STORIES.


and so


forth-to say nothing of


dear old Tan


the Irish water-spaniel, who was exactly


as his little mistress.
was quite as well off.
ness in the world, Miss


as old


Indoors our small friend


She had the


Kirke,


a delightful and interesting kind of play, because


the doctor had said one


day, when Ethel had been


telling him one of her stories, the less that child


learns, the


better ; "


and she had


her own dear


mamma to walk with


sometimes,


and Papa


ride with, and


Nursey was always glad to see her


in her domain-empty now, but still a cheery, airy,
big room, where everybody took their cut fingers,


or headaches, or chilblains, or even their


bad tem-


Nurse


had a cure, in her head


or.her heart,


things.


odd that in spite


all I have been telling


lonely


you, Ethel


was a


she used


spend hours of her time, especially in wet weather,


stories-these very stories which


kindest gover-


who made lessons


to


pers.


for all these


Well, is it not rather


little girl ? So lonely, that


of


very


to


_ __1~~1_^1___1_1_


I


herself


telling









IN TROD UCTOR Y.


going


to tell you.


This is the way I came


used.


them.


on


her


we were sitting in a small room


another
seldom


one, which,


mamma,
opening
however,


and
into
was


by


any means,


but one forgot, or at


least I


how damp and cold and nasty the


weather was


out of


doors, as I sat by


mamma, talking about


the fire with Ethel's


our boys.


How they out


their clothes, and


wore out their boots,


and tumbled into ponds, and so on; but yet were
each and all the cleverest and the most delightful


in the world,


and would probably be Lord


Chancellors,


Marshals,
ever they


and Prime


and goodness


Ministers,


knew


grew up.


The room we were sitting


in


was divided


the larger


one by


heavy curtains,


and through


their folds came the muffled


tones


of


a child's


voice. I had


heard the monotonous drone for


I am


to know about


One day I was calling


and larger


It was not a nice sort of day


did,


grew


boys


what,


and Field-
as soon as


from


I --II---C--PUWP--~L--


___ __


-rm~--~_1L---
-- -U^I~---UI-~--9 I___11--









RIBBON STORIES.


space


of time before I remarked


and then


I asked


Ethel's mother what


the sound


was.


" Oh,"


said she,


a ribbon


You must


"it is only


story!"
surely


know


Ethel


by


telling


her-


this time that


I am quite as fond


monkeys, so I
cried, What.?


of


pricked


never


a story


up my ears


heard


as any of


directly,


of such a thing!"


" I daresay you


have not,"


said Ethel's mamma,


laughing <


you


must


or she'll


at my eagerness.
be very careful
stop directly.


"Come and


look,


but


to let her see you,


Not out of caprice


shyness; she declares that she
tell me a ribbon story, but that


a word


often


wants


she cannot


if she knows I am listening to her.


or
to


say
She


not at all vexed, however, if


anyone


hears


her.


know that


She only begs that
they are listening."


These


words


quite removed


my scruples,


should not have


some


short


it,


self


you
and


over-


she


may


not


for


Y_


otherwise I


been able


to make









INTRODUCTORY.


myself hear what was not intended


for


my ears,


any more


letter.


than I
suppose


could open another person's


I still


hesitated


for the little


girl's mother


softly


got


up from her sofa,


to the curtain, opening its


folds


and went
the least


bit in the world, and beckoning me to come and


too. This is what


I saw.


A


great,


colour and


gaunt,
dismal


half-furnished


room, drab


in general appearance; prim,


too,


with the


unused


horrible,


sitting-room.


housemaid 1
The blinds


tidiness


of


an


were down


and there was no fire, and


not much


in the clear space in


room


the middle


a bright little figure made


of the dreary
a glow of life,


and warmth, and colour wherever she flitted,


she was never still for one moment.


I have only


to lay


down my pen and


think,


to bring


distinctly
/


before me.


I see a tall, slender


about eight or nine years old, who is slim without


being thin, and singularly graceful.


simple


She has on a


frock of crimson serge, with a pretty little


peep


light,


But


for


it all


girl,


_ ~Y _I_ _____ ~I_


____ I_









RIBBON STORIES.


bodice and apron of white muslin. Her fair hair
curls in short thick rings all over her little head,
and from my hiding-place whenever she turns
towards me I can see a pair of big brown eyes
shining and sparkling through the dull gloom. I
am sorry to notice, however, that the little face
is pale, and the red lips are very tremulous,
for she is approaching a terrible catastrophe in
her story, and it is all far too real to the little
romancer.
But the strangest thing I saw was a long piece
of bright blue ribbon, about a couple of inches
wide, in the child's hands, which she ceaselessly
moved backwards and forwards. Sometimes she
waved it like a streamer; again she would wind
it round her neck and waist as if it were a scarf;
but oftenest she danced about, slipping it through
her fingers as if she were "paying it out," as
sailors say of a rope or cable. All the time her
feet were moving as well as her nimble hands,
and I could not help being struck by their ex-


__ I _I_ __III____IIU__ILI___Is~LIIII-C*LIII









INTRODUCTORY? Y.


pressive


gestures.


Now all is hurry and


in the rapid patter;


guess that those light,


and triumph;


airy


again it
bounds


whilst sorrow and


is easy to


mean


perplexity


joy
are


expressed by faltering and uncertain steps.


It was plain that the child


had no notion of


display or


affectation.


All was a simple, literal


outpouring of her inmost heart and mind;
as such I am going to try, as exactly as I


to reproduce


some


of the stories


Ethel told


herself


in this


way.


often


had opportunities


of listening to


her without her knowing


was doing so; but I made it


a point


that I


of honour


to my own conscience to say afterwards, Ethel,


I heard you telling a ribbon story


to-day."


"Did
least, sl


horrid ?"


you ?


shyness


or else,


Sshe would answer,
or embarrassment.


" It was a


very


without the
"Wasn't it


sad


one to-


day," or Isn't Joe a funny boy ?


he does make


me laugh


so." Joe


being


one of her ribbon


characters, and as real as Ralph


or Oswald


fusion


con-


and
can,


to


__









RIBBON STORIES.


But the


curious part


of the performance


was the little


maid's


firm belief that


the stories


came out of the ri
to her mother with


bbons.
a doleft


I have known her run
ul face and a piece of


new blue
Mamma,


ribbon in her hands, complaining,


this is such a


stupid


ribbon !


" Oh,


It has


no stories in it.


I have tried


it with


all sorts of


things,


and it will not say a


word.


give me another


bit, please ?"


Sometimes she


had two or


three lengths


off before she


could find one to please


real secret


of


course


lay


in her sense of


touch,


which was as acute and


delicate as that of


blind person.


A corded


ribbon was


her deepest


aversion.


" It goes so slow, and is so clumsy," she


ciied impatiently; whilst


satin "went too fast, and


talked nonsense;"


but a nice


thick


and yet


of silk


ribbon,


without any


edge to check


the rapid play of the little fingers, was


thing,


just the


and "full of stories."


Beyond


a dim, general impr. ssion of the


her.


Will


you


cut


her.


The


piece


soft


plot


_ U~~_ II_ _____


__


10









INTR OD UCTOR .


of the tale,


the child could


not be brought
Z:>


recollect


the details


hearers such a vivid


which gave
idea of how


to her


real this


hidden


world


of stories was to their
often to repeat them


little teller, and I


to her


in the hope


she would correct me if


had made a mistake;


but to my disappointment Ethel


my story as if


would


it were new, clapping


listen


to


her hands


and laughing, or looking
the tale varied from gay


sad and downcast as


to


grave.


Sometimes


she carried
mne to tell
request I


her impertinence s
her an old "ribbon


indignantly


o far aE
story; "


refused, and


s to beg
but this


came


at


last to be regarded as a challenge for a


game


of romps.


So although


repeated


back


Ethel
again


has heard


to her, they


all these


stories


will probably


seem as new to


I hope


she will


her as they will to you,


not be


ashamed


of them.


have agreed
comings they


between


may be


us, that


whatever


found to possess, the


short-
blame


to


used
that


and
We


--










RIBBON STORIES.


to be equally


divided


between


her and


me for


not telling


it properly;


for it could


not have


been the ribbon's


fault,"


says


Ethel most


phatically.


em-


_1_1_ _ _LII__ _


____ I



















CHAPTER I.


ELLA'S

ELLA was a little girl


DR E AM.

as big as me.


a very pretty little thing, but oh


All day


long


so "'quisitive !"


she used to ask her mamma and


her Miss Kirke questions about everything;


even at night she


dropped to sleep


asking


Nurse,


"But what


becomes


of


Ella when her eyes


shut?


How is it that she sees all the same, and


even better than when her eyes are open?


she another


pair of


night-eyes


like the owls,


Nursey dear; or how is it ?"


Luckily Miss


had shut


her eyes


and


gone


off sound


asleep


before Nurse could think of


anything to say.


deed, the great comfort with this little girl was that


She


was


and


are


Has


Ella


In-









CHAP.


RIBBON STORIES.


she asked so many questions about everything, that


if you were


not in


a hurry,


and pretended


to be


thinking


of something to answer, she


would


quite sure to


then before


fly off


to another


question,


that was answered, to another;


and
and


so on all day long.


Strangers and visitors used to say,


when


Ella


inquired


their


what


gowns


had


a worm's


made


come


their watches


off a


sheep's


mouth, "Dear me,


tick,
back,


what a


or if
or out
clever,


intelligent


little girl!"


and they would politely


explain to her, so far as they knew themselves,


how everything


she asked


about was


made;


they


soon found


Before one question


that it was not of


much use.


was half answered,


Ella's


had flown


off to something else, and


did not listen or try to understand what the kind


person was taking so much trouble to


explain,


so her mamma's


friends soon gave her


despair,


and only


said,


"We are going


I do hope that horrid, tiresome


be


of


mind


but


she


up


in


to


see


__ I_ __ ___ ~__II~


_ ____~


_____ _CII __ __ ____


14


Mrs. So and So.









I.] ELLA'S DREAM. 15

little Ella won't be there; she does nothing but
ask questions."
Now you must know, Ethel, that there are a
lot of curious little creatures, something like fairies,
but even slighter and prettier than fairies, always
hovering about us. Don't you know when the sun
comes in through these funny windows in the hall,
what beautiful things you can see on the wall?
Blue, and pink, and purple, and gold? Papa
thinks it has something to do with the coloured
glass; but why aren't they always there, then ?
The glass is always there. No, I'm nearly quite
sure they are bits of my fairies' frocks. Just little
bits, you know; and don't you remember how
they jump about ? that's because they are dancing
like this. Then again, I am quite, quite certain
that a very clever, wise fairy lives inside me, just
here, who knows exactly when I've been good
and when I've been naughty; and she is very
particular, and does lead me such a life until
she gets her own way. Mamma says it's my









16 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.

con-con-conscience; but I don't think it can
be a part of me, it seems so like another person.
Well, we'll settle it is a fairy, or at least not quite
a fairy-I am tired of fairies, they are really so
common-a sylph. I heard somebody say I was
a little sylph, and I asked Miss Kirke and she
told me; but that gentleman must have been
making fun of me, or else he did not know what
a sylph was, for they are not so big as my little
finger, and so thin that you can see right through
them. I think they must be nearly as pretty as
soap-bubbles.
Well, these sylphs and things were worried to
death by Ella, for they get blown about by
people's breath, and Ella was always saying Oh!"
and making a sort of gale of wind in the room,
by rushing here and there, asking questions.
Never still a moment was she-and so idle! If
she would have had patience, her Miss Kirke
said, to sit down and read in books, she would
have found out all about everything she wanted









I.] ELLA'S DREAM. 17


to know


in time,


but she would


not take


trouble


herself-oh


dear no !


At last the


sylphs


could


bear it no longer,


after Ella


had gone to bed they held


a meeting;


that's what papa


grievance.
and they


says people do when they have a


Well, the sylphs had a huge grievance,


came and had a


meeting


here


in this


very room, when we were all fast,


fast asleep, Ella


and all.


worst


There were such a lot of them ;


of it


was they were so weak and so


ut the
small


that they


could


not do much.


It was proposed


to pinch


her, but although ten thousand


of the


bravest and strongest sylphs were ordered to pinch


all at
would


once,


they said


not mind


it,


they felt


or be


hurt a


sadly afraid


bit.


They


she
tried


on a bud of that fuchsia there,


growing in a


pot, but


they could


jumped on it


The sylph-king


not pop it, though


and squeezed it


grew


they


for ever so long.


very angry, and said


some-


body must really find out a way


of punishing


Ella, or else he'd


put it


in the housemaid's


any


and


big


head


b


1









18 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


to open all


the windows at once, and


away


altogether.


The sylphs were terribly


frightened


them,
Ella's


when


they


not to be losing


room,


heard


time,


up


and walked


this,


and


some


flew upstairs


and down


of
to


inside


her nose, and


others


tugged


away at a few loose


which had


escaped out


of her


net,


but they


did not do any good at all, only harm indeed,


for


they woke her up, and then she sneezed, and called


to her nurse, and wanted


up,


and where


to know why she


had


she had been, and so on.


But after Nurse


had said,


"In dreamland,


dear," luckily she went off to sleep, and the sylphs


went downstairs again very softly, and


didn't say


a word to anybody about what a mess they had


made
would


of trying to wake up the


little girl.


It


soon be morning, when the servants would


be opening


doors


and windows,


and


sweeping


and dusting the sylphs out of all their pet hiding-


places,


and


no one had thought


of


any way


punishing Ella.


At last a wee, wee sylph


right


blow


them


hairs


woke


my


of


came









ELLA'S DREAM.


flitting down the


chimney.


Perhaps


that


what made her so black, but yet it could not


was
have


been,
black


for I


know


she was not dirty.


veil like Mamma's


gown which


She had


shines-


gauze,


she calls it,-and a long black robe;


robe and veil were covered with tiny diamond dots,


and these


were


her


eyes,


it turned


out.


Wasn't


that curious ?


but so it was.


Well,


she came and


made a reverence to the


sylph-king, who was sit-


ting up


there exactly


on


the point of old


Father


Time's
rence ;


scythe,


over the clock.


This sort of reve-


not a curtsey, so, but two twirls and


skip, and her foot stuck out gracefully behind,


a
up


in the air, this way,


while she thus addressed


sovereign:


" Please


your Airiness,


I'm a dream-sylph,


can creep in


where no one else can, and


worry the life out of that


Ella before


she wakes


up, if


you'll only say the word."


" What


word ?"


thundered


the king.


thundered, for he was too small-whispered the king.


C2


I.]


19


both


her


and


I'll


No,


not


- -- ---









20 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


"Any


word


you choose,


my


dread


lord,"


the dream-sylph


(for


she was


dreadfully


fright-


ened)


" any word which will signify your gracious


acceptance of my poor services.


" Get along with you


then,"


said the king


graciously, for


he was


pleased


to think


he had


alarmed
one too.
appear t


her of that


one of his subjects, and


" Get along with


you,


o have got plenty of eyes)


horrid


such
and


a clever
see (you


that you


habit of asking questions


out caring for the answers."


" Gracious Airiness, it shall be done, if


sylph can do it,"


said the little creature


one poor
in black,


as she flitted up the chimney again.
I can't think how she came to know her way so


but it is


a fact that she did not make any


mistakes


in the fluffs,


or flues, or


whatever


are called,


as that poor little Tom


did before


turned into a


Water Baby, but she


down,
young


straight


lady was


into Miss Ella's room, where the


snoring


fast asleep,


with her


said


more


cure


with-


well,


they


he


came


right









I.] ELLA'S DREAM. 21


little turned-up nose looking as


if it wanted


know something or the


other.


People said she


had an inquisitive nose; dear me, I hope my nose


an inquisitive one !


I'll look;


no, I don't


think it
a great


is.


Well, this dream-sylph had picked


many other little sylphs on the 'way,


up
all


dressed in black like herself, only without all those


eyes, so she had


wherever she wanted


to push them


them


here and


to go.


They


there,
were


crooked


little things, and turned and


twisted


they went in


the funniest way you ever saw, but


that was partly because they were so blind, you


know, but it looked very odd.


The dream-sylph


did not lead them to Ella's nose nor to her mouth,
no, not even to her eyes, as I should have thought,
but she got them all upon the pillow, and drove


them like a flock of sheep right into Ella's ear.


She


went in last herself,


having first of all


jumped up


and down like this on


Ella's eyelids just to shut


them up tighter.


But after a


little while,


she too


down that long passage leading from


Ella's


isn't


to


as


went









22 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP


ear right into the very middle of her head.


When


she


got there, she opened


very wide


all her diamond


eyes


indeed, and the crooked little creatures


she had brought with her


began


racing


down the passages inside Ella's head-for I heard


the doctor say there were passages-and


the


mo-


ment they set off


This is what sh,
she was asleep;


wide awake.
She dreamed


the time to


get


running,


e dreamt,


Ella began to dream.
but she had no idea


it all seemed


that the morning


up.


She thought


as if she


had


come,


were


and


she was in her


own pretty little


room,


which looked


just the


same as ever.
in one corner.


Nurse


lay


"What a


fast asleep in her
L joke," thought


"here am I awake before


Nurse.


I'll get up and


dress myself,


and play her


a trick."


She had


dim idea


that her toilette would need


to be made


over again, so she did not take the trouble to get


into her bath, or
began to dress.


do any washing at all; she only


But nothing would go


up


and


bed
Ella,


right ;










( LI\


7


-'-
//


-N


- -x'


\ \V\


ELLA'S DREAM.


_ ___ __ I___ I


c`


p~d;?


A


P. 23.


~R ~~









ELLA'S DREAM.


first her little


socks wriggled


and twisted


about


in her hands and


dropped


upon


the floor ever


often,


and all


the time she was trying to put them


on,


her two little


exactly


as if there


shoes


were


kept


feet inside


dancing


them.


about,
They


did the prettiest


steps


you


ever saw;


some were


like this,
jumped,


and then every


so !


but she founc


footed all


now an


At first Ella liked w;
1 it very troublesome


over the


room


id then they
watching them,


to


run bare-


after the tiresome, pat-


tering


things.


The moment


she got


near them


began


to


sing


out to her-


I Say, Ella, say-
Of what are we made?
You don't catch us to-day
Till your forfeit is paid."


" What


nonsense!"


little bare foot.


cried


" How can


Ella, standing


I tell


what


on one
you're


made


of!


I'll ask somebody as soon as I


dressed."


so


they


am


--T--


- i. __ ____


I.]


23









24 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.

Oh no, no, that won't do," cried the right shoe,


tap, tapping


on the floor with its toe and heel in


the most provoking way.


" You


have asked often


enough,


and been told fifty


times


all about


but you never
want to know.


listened,


So


for


now you


you did not really


can't tell


us,


and I


you fair warning you won't


remember


little kid is


all about


how the


sent to the tanner,


catch


us until


skin of the
and then to


the shoemaker,


and all about


it.


Begin


now."


" I won't!"


screamed Ella, stamping her foot


the floor;
moment.


but, oh what


a yell


she gave the next


She had stamped on a pin-a crooked


pin, too; and it began


carpet,


and


going


head


hopping


over point


all about


exactly


the street


SHow am I


made ?"


it cried.


"Why


am I


sharp ?
fasten
haste:


Who


on their


you


gives


pins


heads,


were told all


points ?


Ella dear?


about us,


How do they


Come,


make


you know,


yesterday;


begin


at the beginning


us,


give
you
poor


on


boys.


the
like


so


only


now,









I.] ELLA'S DREAM 25


when


was only


a wire.


should


like


to hear


my own
Well,


history very much indeed."


then,


Ella, very sulkily;


things


were making


you won't hear it from me,"


for she began
fun of her.


to suspect
"I don't


about my shoes and stockings.


my petticoats and run across the


I'll just


slip


room and


Nurse, and she'll soon catch my shoes for


pick


you up and throw


you spiteful


you


me, and


out of the window,


pin."


The petticoats


were no easier


to catch,


than the shoes.


As for her little blue


flannel


petticoat


with its


pretty


scolloped edge,


Ella was obliged to


sit on the edge of her bed


and watch that, its antics were so extraordinary.


It waved here, and it waved there, like


a flag.


Then


it dropped on


the floor, and Ella perceived


to her amazement for


her dream-eyes


sharper-sighted


every


moment that


dragged
creatures,


about


by


hundreds


all exactly like those


of little crooked


things


put in


said
the
care


on


wake


ever,


how-


grew


was









26 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


to show that


a question


is asked.


she made a sudden dart and got


her bare


upon it, and


then it wrapped


itself all around


her leg,
if some


and said, in a solemn


muffled


one was speaking with their


voice, as


head


tied


a bag.


"Tell


me directly,


0


you intelligent


child,


what I am made of.


How do I come to be blue ?


Did I


grow on a sheep's


back or on a goat's ?


Answer me that


directly,


or shiver


all day with-


out me.


" I'm sure


forget,"


sobbed


Ella,


for she


very cold and shivering
put you on, please. Nu


already.


"Do let


rse will be so


angr3


run about like


this and catch


cold."


" What


a cold?"


shrilled


a thousand wee,


wee voices, like so many sneezes all about


room.
don't
about


"Why


do


run after it,
it, there's


you say


'catch


do you ?


a good


girl.


a cold?'


You


Come, tell us all
Aishoo aishoo!


aishoo!"


book


Once


foot


up


in


was


me
r if


the









I.] ELLA'S DREAM. 27


" Nurse !"


spair,


cried


Ella, now fairly driven


"get up directly: please do,


Everything


is so dreadfully


unkind,


Nurse
and I


to de-
dear.
want


you to wash an
But no Nurse
the dream-sylph


d dress


me.


answered, for you remember


had jumped up and


that


eyelids too, so as to shut them up very tight,
and had stopped up her ears with a little ball


made


tightly
them,


of


some


together. I'
poor things,


of the other


t was rather


because


they


sylphs


rolled


disagreeable


up
for


had to hold


on so tight to each other lest they should come


to pieces, and make the dream-sylph


angry ;


they had to do as they were told, you know.
Well, Nurse didn't wake up, because she couldn't,


and after


a little bit Ella


began to roar, but she


soon left that off.


The little shining drops pricked


her cheeks


as they


rolled


down them, as if they


had been so many needles,


and kept


saying,


piping voice:
Where do


my tears


keep, Mamma, when


down on her


but


in


I'm







28 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.
,, _,,, ,


not crying ?
or sorry ? I


Why


do they come


t's very odd,


isn't it ?


ever is it that makes them


when
And,


salt ?-why


I'm hurt
oh what
shouldn't


they be sweet ?


It would be so much nicer."


Ella was so surprised


that she stopped


crying


directly,


for she remembered


quite


well having


asked


her mother those very questions just before


she went


to bed;


and she also recollected


her mamma had begged her not to tease, for that


her head


ached very badly, and


had promised


tell her all about tears another time;


but Ella


would


not wait,


and bothered


mamma until


she told her. And


could not remember one word


yet


of it all;


now she
and there


were


these


her cheeks,


odious,
making


selfish,


them


cruel


tingle


tears


pricking


and smart,


and


calling out all the time,
-we want to know this
"I'll look in that big


" Tell us now;


be quick


minute.


book


which


Miss


Kirke


says


tells one everything, directly after breakfast,"


said Ella, if you will only let me alone now.


I'll


that


to


her


poor


sick









ELLA'S DREAM.


never cry again, that's certain; what is the good of
it if one's tears are to turn round and bully one ?"


But Ella felt
until she could


stabs


to run out of the room.


so angry, she
bear the pain


longer,


went on crying
of all the little
and jumped up


that she was


going to escape from her troubles


so easily, she found


herself


mistaken.


moment she touched


the door,


its handle


began


to turn round
barrel-organ,


and round


and


it ground


like the handle


out


a sort of


like this :

Stay a moment, Ella, dear:
Tell, oh tell me why I'm here?
What's the good of keys and locks?
Why don't doors open before one knocks?
What, I pray, are those knobs of brass?
Why has Auntie got them of glass?"


me, Ribbon,


didn't know you


could


up such


where were we ?


beautiful


Oh, at


verses !


the door !


Let me


Well,


must know,


Ella had


asked


just such


silly


ques-


on her cheeks no


If she thought,


however,


The


very


of


tune


Dear


make


see,
you


_ ---~LIII- y_


I.]


29







30 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


tions


only


remembered


the Sunday
something el


before,


but she had


Ise she wanted


to know


about


before


her aunt


could answer, and


had run away whilst
she remembered the


she was speaking,


beginning


but still


for a wonder, and


said quite


boldly,


"We


lock our doors to


out people; bad people-perhaps robbers."


" Oh, do you ? "


grated


out the key,


making


horrid rusty sound, which


set all Ella's


teeth on


edge;


" that's


very


curious now.


And who


robbers ?


and why


do they


come ?


and what


they want ? and.--


"Oh, stay, stay! "


that.


must


have


cried Ella, I


some breakfast


don't


first.


know all
I never


heard


Jane


bring


it in,


but there


it is,


and I am


really so hungry and tired with all these questions.


I hope Nurse


in


won't mind my eating


my nightgown


just for once.


my breakfast


I have


tried


to wake


her, and I've tried to dress myself,


those


odious


they all are!


things
Well,


won't let


Jane


me.


How


has brought up


stupid
a nice


she


keep


are


do


but









ELLA'S DREAM.


breakfast!


Why,


here's


jam


and poached


toast.


It must be


mamma's breakfast,


should think.


Perhaps


she has got


my bread


and milk by mistake.


Never mind, it


is not


fault;


I had


better eat it as it is here."


So saying, she sat down


on a chair, still


in her


little nightgown, you know, without having washed


or said her prayers, or anything,


she drew the plate with the poached


her ;


eggs


and


towards


but the moment she touched it, a lot of the


same little crooked creatures laid hold of the other


end, and gave


a tug all together, just as sailors do


at a rope,
away, and


you know, and


all lifted


up


they jerked the


their crooked


plate


little fore-


fingers, like this, and said solemnly:


Ella! Wh3
eggs poached ?


y don't the hens always lay


Just answer us that!"


"I don't think I care for any eggs this morning,"


said Ella, bravely.


please:"


dish,


" I'll have some jam,


you


but when she took the cover off the glass


three large wasps flew out ; yet they didn't


and


31


eggs,


my


or dressed,


their


__







32 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


away.


Oh, no!


they kept buzzing


the jam, and this is what


they buzzed.


" What is


jam made of?-buzz-z-z-z.


Why do they boil it ?-


buzz-z-z.


Why


do they


put sugar ?"


and


a lot


more


questions, all about jam ;


with a


great


of buzzing
"Perhaps


any jam


between.


Mamma would


this morning,"


rather I did


remarked


Ella,


not have


putting


the lid on again, and shutting in the wasps.


will try and cut myself some bread."
up the knife and began to cut the ni


but she could not manage it.


So she took
ce brown loaf,


The horrid


knife


slipped every time, and came down crack


plate,


until I wonder


it did


not break


it.


on the
Every


time it came down crack it said


" What is bread .


made of ?


a word, like this.
Why do they .


make it of. wheat ?


Who grinds the wheat?


Where


. is it


. ground ?"


So you can see how


often


and how hard poor Ella tried to get


breakfast;


for the


knife only said one


word every


time it slipped.


fly


right


over


deal


" I


her









ELLA'S DREAM.


At last she


gave


up


with


a sigh,


and put


down


the knife,


which


immediately stood


its handle and jumped


up and down like


a Perfect


Cure, and rapped out,


" What


are knives


made


are they


so sharp?


Will the back


of the blade cut as well as the front ?"


number of silly questions, to which


Ella paid


attention, for she spied the milk-jug, and thinking


to take it by
any milk into


to make


surprise, never waited to
a cup, but-first turning


sure Nurse


was still sound


pour


out


her head
asleep-


up the jug


and tried to


drink


out of it.


But, oh,


what


a jump


she gave!


A great,


voice,
asked


as if some one were speaking


in


milk come
it black?


get
6


cold ?"


a hollow


from ?
Why


kind of


Why is


is it


All these


in the jug,


roar, Where


it white ?


warm ?
- severe


What


Why


does
isn't


makes


questions


asked


suddenly, quite


startled


Ella, and she


dropped


the milk-jug


so hastily


that it


broke,


and


every


little bit of the china


began waltzing round and


of?


up


Why


on


and


no


lifted


deep


_ILI_ ~_ __


------C1--------- -------------


___~


- `-T----


1.]


33






RIBBON STORIES.


CHAP.


round,


singing:-" Who will mend me?


break ?"


and


a lot more questions,


as fast as


possible, making a sort of little tum-a-tum between


just to mark


the time.


Ella!


You would


have felt quite


sorry


for her,


if you could


have seen how sad


looked, sitting


there, with


only her


nightgown on,


in the cold, with a nurse who


would


not wake


up and help


her,


and


insisted on knowing all


they


would


allow


her to


clothes
about


put


and food which


themselves


them on or


before
to eat


them.


She


sat quite


wondering


what


still, with


her hands on her


she had better


do next.


fire was all laid


thought
a match


what


ready


fun it would


and light


it;


to be lighted,


be to go an


but just


at that


and she


d strike
moment


the little gilt bear which held the matches sneezed,


and lifted


up


his head


at the neck, so Ella knew


he was ready to say


something


if she touched


him; and


as for the coals there were such a lot


34


each,


why


did


Poor


she


lap,
The


C"III~C-


I









I.] ELLA'S DREAM. 35


of them, that she felt directly,


if they all


began
Zb


to ask questions together, and all different ques-
tions too, there would be no such thing as
stopping them. So she turned her head aside,
and said quite softly to herself-inside herself,
you know, not with her lips at all-" What a
good thing it is I can't ask myself any questions."
"Oh, can't you?" answered herself to herself;
"you'll find you can, though. Who torments
other people to death, wanting to know some-
thing or the other all day long, just for the sake
of asking questions; who does that, eh ?"
Ella could not stand this any more. It was
really too much, you know, when one began scold-
ing oneself like that, so she rushed to her bed,
and flung herself down on her knees, as if she
were going to say her prayers, and called out
quite loud, "Ella, Ella! but she never will do
so any more." And then she jumped up and
scrambled into bed, feeling so thankful that the
sheet did not ask her any questions, and she
D2







RIBBON STORIES.


CHAP.


cuddled herself up as


warm as she


could, but still


it seemed


very cold.


However, she managed


get to sleep again;


that is to say, she thought she


went
sylph


to sleep, but it was really that


got


all her


little crooked people


the Dream-


together


and chased


them


out of


poor


Ella's


head


to let her have some peace and rest.


As


so as
soon


as the last stray


question


had been caught


that lady in the


black veil all over diamond eyes,


and tumbled out upon the pillow to find


home
start,


as best he might, Nurse woke up


feeling


as if somebody


had taken


with a
a plug


out of each ear.
"Bless me," she


cried


"how


late it


there's that child gone and kicked all the blankets
off her, and she must be as cold as a stone. Wake
up, Miss Ella, dear; look where you've got your


blankets too!


tumble
"Oh,


Whatever has made you toss


and


about in that way?"
Nursey," said Ella, not even opening her


but turning round so as to hide


her head


36


to


by


his


way


is!


And


eyes,


_ I_~1___YI~_~_ ______









ELLA'S DREA M.


37


in the pillow,


"Don't,


pray don't, ask me any


questions,


you


can't think


how tired I


am of


them!


Everything has been so horrid.


I couldn't


wash, or dress, or eat my breakfast


they wanted to know


all about how


for the


they


made,


and where they came from."


Nurse looked very:much surprised.


No wonder;


my nurse would be astonished to hear me talk


that way, though


do talk a
But that's


she often says,


powerful lot of


only


" Miss


nonsense,


Ethel
she ?"


because she doesn't understand.


Ella's


nurse


did not understand


either,


felt quite
frightened


quietly
what


frightened.


when


Ethel


and silently,


soap


was made


Indeed she was still more


let herself


without wanting


of,


or where


be dressed


to know
sponges


grew,


or why


buttons


were made


round,


people wore clothes at all, and all her usual


foolish


questions.


"I hope


the child


isn't ill,"


Nurse


thought


herself. When


Ella went to her lessons she


way
were


and


why


or


to


was


___ _____ __


I.]







RIBBON STORIES.


so quiet,


and good,


and silent,


that Miss Kirke


to her


mamma


and said-


"Do
thing.


you know,


fear Ella can't


She has not asked


be


me a single


quite the
question


all- lesson-time."


her here,"


said Mamma.


"Ella,


what is


the matter with


you ?


Both


Nurse


and Miss Kirke


little
thing


chatterbox


happened


say you


are quite


self this morning.


to


vex you,


unlike


Has


dear ?"


Mamma


cried


for fear they should


Ella,


gulping


down


prick her cheeks,


can't
except,
tions,


think


how horrid


my bed;


thank


When


that did


everything
not ask


has been,


all


me any ques-


goodness."


Ella said this,


her


mamma


got


up


and


the bell, and said,


" Send


for the doctor."


"Don't,


in alarm;


please
"he'll


don't, dear


be


Mamma,"


sure to ask


cried


me such


Ella
a lot


of -questions!"


But the doctor didn't, though;


he just


felt her


went


" Send


child


my


"Oh,


your
any-


tears


her
you


rang


~111~


_ _~ _I__~_ __


IC-- --'1'


[CHAP.


38,








I.] ELLA'S DREAM. 39


pulse, and


looked


at her tongue, and


little disarrangement of the stomach, very slight-


a-hem!-a small powder at bedtime,


and perhaps


a draught


in the morning,


will remove all un-


pleasant symptoms.


There is no cause for uneasi-


ness, my dear madam-a-hem!"


And so he went


away; and


Nurse


gave Ella


her powder


spoonful of the same jam she


had tried


so hard


to eat in her dream.


Ar
before


e there any wasps in it ?" sh
Nurse could answer she cried,


mean to ask a question,


indeed


.e asked;


but


"Oh, I didn't


I didn't."


" No, my dear,


there ain't no wapses," said Nurse


very kindly,


"and


I'd dearly


like to hear you


ask a question or two,


just to


show you


ain't off


your head."


"No, Nurse, I'll never,


never ask


questions,"


answered


Ella,


and I


don't


believe


she did either,


do you, Ribbon?


said


"A


in


any


more














CHAPTER II.


TEA IN THE


WOODS.


" WILL !
Gardner


Will,


Will-lee !"


one fine August


shouted


morning


little Polly
to her lazy


brother
porch


Polly was standing


I


just


of the Rectory, and calling


ever she was able. It
morning that you could


was such
not believe


outside
as loud


the
as


a beautiful.
re anybody


would like


to lie


in bed,


unless


they


were too


sick to get up.
and snoring too,


But Willy Gardner was in bed,


although


he was quite, perfectly


well. Laziness was the only thing


the


matter


and if he had anything


to do,


in his play,


he used


to give


up directly,


say, "Oh! I'm tired to death;


and sick of the


whole


thing."


Fancy a boy


being so lazy as that!


with


him,


even


and









TEA IN THE


41


Polly did
with the cle


not look


lazy as


.matis over the


porc


she stood
h hanging


there
down


until it nearly touched


her,


and making her seem


exactly as


good,


if she were a


nice little girl, instead


picture of


of


being


a bright,
the little


her own self.


should like so much to


have had Polly for a sister, and
liked it too I am sure, if she h


she had no
and he was


eating.


Oswald,


who


she would have


ad been real,


for


sister, only this one brother Willy,


half his time asleep, or resting,


He was not a bi
are really very


like Ralph


or
or


nice, considering


are only


boys, so


Polly was not so well


off as me.
Willy Gardner had a little room all to himself,


built over the pantry, and


sticking


out by


side of the


porch.


Outside it looked very pretty


with a great big


Virginia Creeper all over its


walls,


and some


ivy, and


even some


clematis


from the porch,


which


had thrown out a long


branch


and caught


hold of


a nail or something,


girl


else


they


the


red


~--------II~-----------_-C


_


CH. IL[.


WOOODS.






RIBBON STORIES.


[CHAP.


was helping


to


cover


up that new part of


the house,


and make it look as green and pretty


as the old.


Yes,


outside, it was


very


pretty,


but inside-ach !
are inside, don't


We know
we, Ribbon


what
dear?


boys'
Their


rooms
were


not only


strings


of birds'


butterflies-poor little


things,


eggs


why


and cases
can't boys


them alone, I wonder?-but


there were the heads


of little


birds cut


off and


dried, and then nailed


in the middle of a little rosette; for an ornament,


as Willy


said.


At least that


is what


Ralph


Oswald


do,


for them,
the same!
the skins


and they get me to make


and I


daresay


Besides
of mice,


Polly had


the birds'


tanned, and


heads


the rosette
to do just


there


were


cut into little


mats, and Polly


had to bind them round


ribbon,


though


she hated


doing


it,


and then in


one corner a row of rabbits'


tails-scuts, the boys


call 'em,


I believe-was neatly


wall. Every


.ts tail and


time Willy shot


nailed
a rabbit


fastened it up there.


against
t he cut


He had


4 -


and


of
let


and


with


the
off
not








II.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 43

shot a great many, however. I suppose because
he was so lazy, though he might have done so,
for he had a real gun, and could go out and
shoot rabbits whenever he liked. But then he
would have had to get up early or stay out late,
you know, because the bunnies keep in their
holes all day when it is so hot, and only pop up
to feed early in the morning and late at night,
just when they feel certain that lazy boys won't
come out after them.
The reason Polly had got up so early, for I
really don't believe it was seven o'clock yet, or
anything like it, was because it happened to be
her birthday, and one always gets up early on
one's birthday to make it as long as possible.
How dreadful it must be for those poor children
whose birthdays come in the winter! Polly's
birthday was in-let me see-in August, just
like mine. That's the best time, for it is not
too hot, and the boys haven't gone back to
school yet. I should have liked mine in June,







44 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


because


of the strawberries,


but August


will do


very well,


account
birthday.


and Polly liked


of what


Ever since


Polly


happened


could


hers in August


every


year


on


remember anything


.on
her


her


birthday


treat


had always


been


the same-tea


in Stock Wood.


Oh it was such a delightful place,


and I
reason
going


ago-a


am going
Polly got


to be


whole


and there could


although
kind peor


to tell


up


you


all about


so early was


a fine day,


year,


be


for


it.


The


to see if it was


once,


a long


I daresay-it had been
no tea in Stock Wood.


Mr. and Mrs. G
?le, did all they


ardner,
could


who


were


to make


time
wet,
And
very


up


to


Polly


for her disappointment,


very, very


sad for her to


still it had been


be obliged to


have


tea


in the house


on her birthday just like


other


days.


There


was no fear of that


happening


however,


for not only


was the


sun shining,


and not
swallows


a cloud


were


to be


flying


seen anywhere,


quite


high, -and


but the


when


Polly


day,


to-









TEA IN THE


asked


only


old Hollenby the


person


up


gardener,


and about


so


who


early,


was the
he had


answered,


" A fine day


is it going to be then?


Bless


your little heart, Miss,


it 'll be


the beauti-


fullest


day of the whole year.


so for the poor harvest-men,


A trifle warm or
but no doubt the


Squire '11


consider


that in the beer."


It seemed rather horrid to


think of beer so early


in the morning, when


Polly had not


even had


breakfast


yet, but it


reminded


her that she was


hungry, or, I should say, thirsty; and as she spied


the cows coming out of the field,


her own little mug and


took


she


it to


ran off for


Jim Stickles,


and said,


"It's my


birthday, Jim,


and I've


a little milk, if you please."


Jim was rather a cross old man, something like


our Jim, and was bent almost in two with


rheu-


matics,
and out


still he
of the


would go
field and


on driving


the cows in


milking them, and when


Papa-I mean Mr.


Gardner-said,


"Jim,


you'd


better


have a boy to help


you do


all the hard


II.]


45


her


for


come


__IYIIUIIII____I____C_- _I


WO ODS'.







RIBBON STORIES.


work;"


Jim


would


try


to straighten


himself


say, "Noa, noa,


Measter, thank


you kindly all the


same,
well ac


but sure-ly I'd have
; the dumb beasts.


to drive


Noa, if


me extra work, gie me that little
for sale over-bye; but don't gie


the boy


as


yer want to gie
yalla cow that's


me any boys,


beg yer."


times


Polly;


if his


That's


back


that is to


what Jim
was very
say, not


used to say.


Some-


bad he'd be cross to
exactly cross to her,


you know, but


he would


say things to


which


Polly


felt quite sure he


would


not have


said if she had


not put him


out by coming


the shed with


her mug.


However, as it was her birthday,


Jim


could


possibly


be


cross to


the little girl.


He only


looked at her and


birthday


then,


said,


" It's


a fine day


and I hope we may tak' it


for
for


sign.


all


yer days


the rheumatics, that's


moog


thin,


will be bright; until


to say, Miss.


and we'll fill it


So Polly drank


Give


yer gets


us yer


for yer."


her milk, and


it was so delicious


and


the


cows


into


not


------L -~-U


__


46


CHAP$








II.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 47

that she begged for some more to take to Willy,


for Willy


liked new milk very much if he


have it without


the trouble of


getting


up


could
for it.


Polly must have been a very good-natured little girl,


for although


fag for Ralph and


Oswald,


because they are really nice boys.


I am quite sure


I would not wait upon such a lazy, selfish


boy as


that Willy.


There he lay, snoring in


bed, though


sun was


shining-oh, so beautifully !-in


his window,


and all the


birds


making


row, singing, and


old Hollenby


minutes


chirrupping, and twittering,


sharpening


just outside


his scythe


his window.


every


and
five


It was all as


delicious as ever it could


have be
looking


en


be, and


up and out, feeding


Willy ought
his rabbits,


at his night lines, or attending


of the quantities


always


of business


on their hands.


But


boys


seem to have


no, he lay


there


snoring, yet Polly shook him and even kissed him,
saying so prettily,


"Wake up, Willy dear.


It's my birthday, and it


do it


the


at


such


to
or


to


some






RIBBON STORIES.


CHAP.


is such a beautiful morning; it won't rain all day,


Hollenby


says, and


we're going to have


tea in


Stock


Wood, you


know,


and


I've brought


some new milk."


That


was the only


thing she


said which


made


Willy


open


his


eyes.


He didn't


care whether


was his little


going


sister's


to be fine, nor


birthday, nor whether


was


even where they were going


to have


tea, but he


cared


for the milk,


so he


opened one eye, and his mouth, and said,


"Give it


here."


After he had drank it


up, he turned round


and covered


himself


up, and growled,


"Now go


away, and let's have another nap.


"Oh,


Willy!"


cried


Polly,


much


disappointed;


my birthday;


do


get up."


" Look


here,"


answered


the horrid,


rude boy,


"birthday or not, if


this, sharp,


you don't take yourself out of


I'll heave something


at


you.


Poor little Polly went away very sadly, but


then she heard


Dale,


her mamma's


maid,


calling


her, and


when


she ran upstairs,


Dale


kissed


48


you


"it's


just


her,


__ )_


__









II.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 49

and gave her a large roll of beautiful scraps of silk
and ribbons and lace, and a little sprig of real
artificial flowers, to dress her doll with. Then
she took her into her mamma's room, and there
were her mamma and papa wide awake, not a bit
sleepy or cross, like Will, but full of play and fun,
and bringing out every minute a book or a paint-
box, or something delightful, from under their
pillows, or from beneath the counterpane, and pre-
tending to wonder who had put the things there,
and who they were for. Of course they were
all for Polly, and there were so many of them,
and everything was so interesting and amusing to
look at, that it didn't seem a minute between
breakfast and dinner. Generally Polly found
this part of the day rather long, because she
missed having to do her lessons-for you know
one does not even practise on one's birthday-
but this day passed as quickly as could be, and


she did
o'clock


not think
when her


it could
mamma
E


be anything
called out,


like one
"Where's








50 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


Polly dear, come and get


donkey-cart is going


your


hat;


to be packed, and will


start."


Can't


you fancy


how Polly


sprang


up and


rushed away to put her boots on, and get her hat ?
And yet, though she was in such a desperate hurry,
she was obliged to stop and jump a little, like this,
because one makes all the greater haste afterwards


one gets rid


of some of


one's


happiness first,


I'm sure I should


burst


if I did


dance a little when I'm very happy, and Polly felt


just the same.
for cook was


First she had to go to the kitchen,


calling her,


and there were all the


things spread out on the table for her to see before


put up.


That was part of


the


treat,


for it made


Polly


feel exactly like her mamma;


she tried
every day,


to appear as if
as she looked at


she ordered


: the great


dinner


basket


of


and asked,


" Do


you think you have


enough there,


Mrs. Evans ?


The boys eat a great


you know."


Polly ?


the


soon


if


that


way.


not


they


were


buns


deal,


got








I.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 51

But Mrs. Evans only smiled and said, "Lord
love you, Miss, they can't eat all of them."
It was very wrong of the cook to speak that
way, for she never did so to Polly's mamma;
she must have forgotten, that it was Polly's birth-
day. After that the little girl did not try to give
any more orders, but she only said, as like
her mamma as ever she could, turning round
and walking away, this way, "It will all do very
nicely, I daresay; I only hope the things won't
get broken." Polly did not look behind, or she
would have seen the cook laughing, and Sarah the
kitchen-maid too, but as soon as she got outside,
she saw the donkey-cart all ready, and it looked
so delightful she was obliged to jump again.
"Come along, Polly," said her mamma; "we
have to go round by the House, you know, and
pick up all the children there. Willy has gone on
already."
Polly thought in her heart that Willy might
have waited for her, as it was her birthday; but
E2






52 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


she would not
nose above the


let the little cross feeling


ground,


hard as ever one can to be


one's


just


birthday.


took


the road, and


She did


show its


because one must try


good


not say


her mamma's hand


through


the big


and nice
anything,


and walked


iron gates,


as
on


but


across
down


a beautiful


hollow all shady


a summer-house,


wooden


across


with big


trees,


a very rickety


bridge, up a lawn like


a little hill,


so to the shady


side of the big


House,


where


the Squire


lived.


Polly


did not jump


about now so very


much.


suppose because


she was really altogether


happy.


When


I'm


too happy


am quite quiet,


same as


if I


was sorry;


and it


so very delightful
afraid it might b


should wake up


altogether
e all a d


and find


that Polly


ream,


felt half


and that she


she had slept


too long


and it was a wet morning.


She even asked


mamma, as I did


" Mamma


dear,


the other


do you


day


think


at that picnic,
it is all quite


past
little


and


just


the


too


was


her









II.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 53


real ? "


did,


and her mamma laughed, just


and said, "Yes, darling,


quite real."


as mine


After


that Polly


mother's


felt


even happier,


and let go


hand, and ran on to where Willy


her
and


the other boys were


when


they


saw her,


standing.
and cried


They


out,


all shouted


" Come


and


look, make haste;"
up to them, Harry,


but before she could


the big


the gentleman he was, and


boy,


lifted


get close


came up
his straw


like
hat


off his


head


and shook


hands


with Polly, saying,


"I wish you many happy returns of the


day,


Polly." That was rather awful, because Harry


was such a big


boy, at Eton; but still it was


very delightful, and made


Polly feel


quite grown


However, she had not much time to think


about it, for all the other five boys came crowding


around


her, calling


out altogether to keep


other in countenance,-for they never would have


courage


to


say it by


themselves, as Harry


did,-" Many happy


returns ;


look what


mother


has given to the tea!"


What,


indeed ?


up.


had


each


Such







54 RIBBON STORIES. [CIIAP.
54 i ,_J


basket


of peaches.


Polly had


never


seen so


many peaches together in all her life,


and the boys


made
hardly


her try to lift


move it.


Willy


the basket, and she_ could


darted


forward


and said,


"I'll help you, Polly dear."


If it had


not been her birthday Polly


might have wondered


whether


he would


have


offered


to help


her if


had been a


basket


of books or clothes


for


some


poor person,
such things.


Indeed


but as it was, she could not think


she had not much time to think any-


thing,


for


Harry


came


forward in


his stately


way-he


was sixteen,


and quite


grown


up, you


know-and
it yourself,
catch hold


said,


Polly.


"You must not attempt to carry


Here,


Claude,


you and Percy


of this, and take care you don't


let


of the boys get at it."


of all


the boys


up at the


Percy
House.


was Polly's
He came


two away from
as the others, 1


Harry, and


but he


was not so strong


was the dearest


boy


you


ever saw.


He was not so cruel as other


boys,


big


just


then,


any
pet








I.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 55

because he often had to suffer pain himself, and
that made him understand better how it hurts
creatures to be played roughly with. Boys don't
know what an ache or a pain is generally, and
they think other things are just the same. Then
Percy had such a glorious voice; and when he
used to shake his thick wavy curls back, in church,
and sing as loud as he could, with his bright blue
eyes looking straight through the narrow side-
door, beyond the Rectory garden and the big
trees, far away, as if he could see right up into
the summer sky, Polly used to feel as if she were
going to cry.
Percy was always very gentle with her too,
though he was not a bit of a molly-coddle; still
he did not seem to think she had no business
in the world as the other boys did, because she
could not jump with a pole, or climb trees, or
play cricket all day long. And his face was
just like one of the angels in the big picture in
the drawing-room. Just like that, only nicer,







56 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


for the angel


looked


always


the


same,


whilst


Percy's


was what
events he


face changed


Papa


every


calls "full of


was a very nice


time he spoke,


and


expression." At all


boy, and


Polly


always


wished


Willy


had been


like that,


but he wasn't,


was he ?


Presently,


in


a minute


or two, the boys


shouted
Violet!


head,
broad


out together,


Come


and


steps


along,


"0Oh,
Vi!"


saw two ladies
of the House.


here's


Polly


running


They


mother
turned


down


both


looked


same,


though


Mrs. Russell


was Violet's


mother,


and


not only


her's, but


the mother


of all


those


great


and red,


they
slim


hav<


boys, Harry and


and puffy,
e a house


as her daughter,


as ladies


all.


She wasn't fat,


so often are when


full of children.


She


and her eyes were


was as


as bright


and she laughed


just


as often and


as sweetly as


Violet did.


But although


Mrs. Russell looked


young


thought


and


the


so pretty,


most


was Violet


beautiful


young


that Polly


lady


in the


all


just


the


and
her
the


so









II.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 57


whole world, and


wondered if


she could


possibly be like
Russell and the
was as fair and
growing against
know, nor quite
pink in them.
proud, although
Polly think of t
ripe corn when


that when
boys were
as fresh
the porch.
white, but r
And then


her
:he
she


she grew
all dark,
as one o
Not red
oses with
she was


beautiful hair--w
sun shining over
wore it hanging


up. Mrs.
but Violet
f the roses
roses, you
just a little
not a bit
rhich made
a field of
down over


shoulders-had been turned up, and dressed
her mamma's for nearly a year, and she
e a long gown like Mrs. Russell's, and did
romp about with the boys any more. Still
was not a bit proud, but came up and kissed
y, and seemed just as delighted to think


that
were
Polly
So
along


it was a fine afternoon, and that they
going to have tea in Stock Wood, as
herself.
they all set out, and even the boys went
tolerably steadily. There was so much to


ever


her
like
won
not
she
Poll







58 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


think


about.


First, it


was by no means


sure that


the donkey-cart


Stock


could


Wood, for the


get up all


old road had


the


been


and the nev
was a great


v one was very rough


anxiety,


indeed.


and Polly thought


That


about


a great


deal ;


then there


was that


great


basket


of peaches


to be carried.


You could


not expect


the boys
about so


to


carry


often


it steadily,


that at last i


and they
t came t(


changed
o be no-


body's
walking


business ;
together,


and Violet and


found


Polly,


it, left to its


who


were


own devices,


in the middle


up


and carried


of the wood.
it for the rest


So they picked


of the


way. They


played


Willy


a trick


about


it though,


for when


to Stock


Wood


they


hid it under


holly-bush,


and when


the boys


came


up they


asked


them,


" Where


are the peaches ?"


if they


did not know.


to think that


they had


Willy was so frightened
been lost, or left behind,


that he
shaking


set


up


his hands,


a loud boo-hoo,


like this,


and


up and


ran about


down,


cry-


way
shut


to


up,


they


got


just


as.









II.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 59


ing out,
boo-hoo.


"Oh the


What


peaches,
shall we


the peaches!


do?


boo-hoo,


They're lost-


oh, they're


lost! It was all your fault, Claude."


But it had really been


were
found


turn to
brother,


put


down


them, for


carry


and it


where


Willy's
Violet


so happened


them


but as he


was her birthday,


fault that
and Polly


they
had


it was Willy's


was Polly's


nobody


said


anything to him, and


he was


soon comforted


when


they


showed him the peaches under the


holly-bush.


The first thing


to do


was to get wood


for the


fire, although


peared,
know.


the donkey-cart


ha


still it was as well to 1
Mrs. Russell and all helped.


id not yet ap-
be ready, you
Polly worked


very hard picking


up twigs, but


she did


not know,


until she tried,


what hard work it is, nor what


an immense long time it takes to get even an


armful


of sticks.


don't


believe


they would


ever have had


enough to


boil the


kettle


if it had


not been for one of the


boys,


Georgie


I think it







60 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


been,


who


came


upon


a big


stack


faggots hidden


away in


the wood, already cut, and


up into bundles,


ready


to be carted


away.


Georgie


lost


no time in hoisting


one of these


bundles up


on his back,


the tea-party-place


with


and staggering
it. He looked


back


to


so funny


as he came


along;


no little


boy to


be


seen at all,


nothing
seemed


but a great,
to be walking


huge bundle


along


of sticks, which


on a pair of legs


of


When


the others saw him


they clapped


their
bravo,


hands,


Georgie !"


and cried,


"Well


But Harry,


done,


though he


Georgie!


laughed


at first,
Georgie,


looked
where


grave


did


directly,


you


and said


, "Hullo,


find that?"


"Down


there,"


said


Georgie,


sticking


head as


well as he could


with such


a weight


on his shoulders.


" Well,


then,


you


must


just


take it back


again


to where you found it, for I know all those


faggots


sold to Farmer


Fenton,


and


we must


not touch


them."


must


have


tied


of


its


own,


up


his


have


been








u.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 61

All the other boys set up a clamour, and said
it was a shame; but Georgie saw that Harry
was in earnest, and knew that he was right, so
he staggered off with his load, and put it in its
place again, and dragged a great bough of a
tree back to make up the fire.
By this time the donkey-cart had arrived, and
the kettle was all ready, full of water and every-
thing, but there was no fire. It wouldn't light,
and no wonder, for the pile of wood looked
more as if they were going to make a bonfire
than boil a kettle. At last Mrs. Russell came
to the rescue, and got Harry to heave up the
great pile, using a thick stick for a poker, and
she shoved in some paper, and at last a blaze
came.
"Fetch the sticks to hang the kettle on!"
some one cried, but the only sticks to be found
were absurd little things, not nearly so tall as I
am. If they had tried to hang the kettle on
them, it would have been completely in the







RIBBON STORIES.


flames,


won't


handle


do,


and all;


you know;


so Harry


Willy,


go and


_ __-lid,


said,
fetch


" This
three


hop-poles.


bring


There


the shortest


was much
trouble of


too stu
searching


are a lot stacked
you can find." I
Ipid and lazy to
for proper sticks, s


yonder;
5ut Willy
take the
o he just


picked


up the first poles he came across,


returned in a minute or two, trailing


and


three huge,


clumsy things


after


him.


They were not


right


at all,


and


even Harry


looked


disgusted,


said. "What


a muff!"


But there was no time


to lose,


they


to


did


go


for the fire
not make


and fetch


was burning


haste


a lot


they
more


away,


would
sticks;


and it


have


had


so they


managed as


well


together with an iron


as they could, and


chain,


and hung


tied them
the kettle


on them, just


all took hands, and


as real gipsies


do,


danced round


and then they


and round


the


fire,


Violet, and Harry,


not do that very


long,


and all.
for they


But they


had


could


put on such


a lot of wood that the blaze got quite tremendous,


and


_I_ _~_


[CHAP.


62









~`" ~~- ~ /

/


)t


/I


'U-


LW, \M%


-)"'


gh _


K \C/-


4
\\
~I~
:i. ,::I
I/IL~P ..1~; -?


rjj~ 1LJ


~r-i~i y~ -~
,- *..,'-


P. 62.


TEA IN THE WOODS.


-- ---------U-------


I


..


w a\


\ ~\r------
-_`i
~- ---- ~i
--- -r
r_,__



;L~1~

--


r




~









TEA IN THE WOODS.


63


and it flared


blew it,


away all to one


until it caught a


side,


as the breeze


beautiful big holly-bush,


standing some way off.


You would


have thought


was Polly herself


could have heard


"Oh,


save it,


who


had caught


how Mrs. Gardner


fire,


cried


you
out,


save it! the beautiful holly, it will


be quite


spoiled."


They all laughed so


much that


they could hardly do


why


she wanted


anything;


it saved ?


course; to decorate it
Christmas. Whenever


for do you know


For the church


and make
Mrs. Gardn


of


it beautiful at
er saw a nice


or a laurel bush,


or anything


which


would


green


and nice


in the winter,


she thought


to hers<
that."


slf


directly,


"I'll have a branch or two of


So all the time she pretended


the cloth, and setting


out the


cups


to be laying


and


saucers,


and the buns and the peaches,


that's what she was


thinking
says my


to


herself.


mamma


At least that


does,


is what


and Mrs. Gardner


Papa


was


just the same.
But nobody


wanted


the


poor holly-bush


to be


holly


be


_ __ __ ~~___I ~____ __


II.]







64 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


burned,


and Mrs. Russell


shrieked


out, Some


bracken!


get


a lot of


green


bracken


and stifle


the blaze."


In


a moment


all, the boys


had flung


themselves


into


a great


patch


green


fern, and they pulled


and pulled away


as hard
another


and


as fast


minute there


as ever they


could.


But in


was a loud cry of "My


finger,


look here!"


and everybody


was showing


everybody else


their


finger,


for the bracken


cut them


Violet's


all


gloves


as if it had been


had not saved


a knife.


her hands,


Even
which


as badly


as the boys'.


However, there


was no tirr e


to tie up


the wounds,


for the


flames


mounted


higher


and higher,


and Mrs.


Gardner
sa!v it!"
back in


kept calling


meaning
a minute


louder


the holly.


and louder,
So they all


or two with their


arms


"Oh,
rushed
quite


full of the damp,


flung


another
nearly (


it down


minute
:hoked


green


bracken,


on the blazing


There
them ;


fire,


and bravely
and then in


was a dreadful smoke. It
but the fire did not blaze


girls


tall


and


of


were


cut


had









II.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 65


for a minute or two, so they thought


it was a good


chance to get the kettle


off and


make


the tea.


The


grown-up


ladies,


Violet, said the tea wasn't very nice when it


made, and that the water was smoked, and


boiled ;


hadn't


but then, you know, ladies are so awfully


particular over their


tea.


Polly thought


fectly delicious,


especially when


it was discovered


that the spoons had


been forgotten, and she had


to stir her


tea with a little bit


of stick.


they sat there


as happy as


happy could


be, with


the tall trees over their


heads, making a beautiful


shade,


and squirrels and birds


in the branches,


watching


until they went


away to


come and


eat up all the crumbs.


The peaches were very


good too, and


their juice ran down Polly's


fingers


into her lap, but


nobody


said


a word,


because


she couldn't


help having


no plate.


Polly


felt


quite


sorry


when


tea


was over,


although


they all ate and drank as much


as ever


they could to make it last longer; but even Willy


any


more


and


even
was


per-


So






66 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


was obliged


to say at last,


like fat Fenetta


the funny song,


Cook


proved


"No,
right


thank
after


you, mum, I'm full."


all,


for they


could


not possibly eat all


good many left.


the buns, and


Polly


looked so


there
grave


were a
at this


that her mamma said,


"We'll look out for some


hoppers
them."


as we go home,


That


cheered


her


and


give


up; she only


the rest to


did not


want cook to see how


foolish


her fear of


a bun-


famine


had been,


After


tea Mrs. Russell


jumped


up


as gaily


Violet or even Polly could have done, and


called


out, "Who'll come and play at Dumb Crambo ?"


Of course
she would
still left a


they all wanted to go out with her, but
only take three boys at a time. That


lot with


Mrs. Gardner, and Violet, and


Polly, and they set them


such difficult words, that


became tremendous


fun to see


Mrs. Russell


doing


"stride," or Harry acting a pony, and Percy


trying to "ride" him.


Then for another word they


had to fly, and to cry, and


to sigh, and


to do


in


as


sit


all









II.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 67


sorts of absurd


things.


They laughed


until Polly


she had eaten so many peaches;


they were no


graver over ^ Shouting


Proverbs."


Everybody had one word


of a proverb, and when


Violet


clapped


her hands, everyone said it


loud as
Harry's


ever they could.


word


But you always


the plainest, and then


the


heard
poor


person who was out used to say quite helplessly,


"I didn't


hear a


word except


'the,'


or all,'


or 'not,' (whichever was


Harry's word),


which


was sure


to be


a stupid little


word, and


no help


at all to them.


Then they sang


songs, and the more out of


more
must


and


they laughed ; and Polly


wonder


funny glees


tune they sang


thought the


to leave


they ever meant


go away, and let them come down


and


and
the


birds


oft
get


some supper in peace and quietness.


a great pity the sun always


wants


to set


so soon on birthdays;


long before Polly thought it


could


possibly be more


than half-past three,


Russell looked at her watch, and cried-


F 2


felt


sorry


and


as


It's


Mrs.







68 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.

"Dear me, who would have believed it could
be so late? It is actually six o'clock. We must
make haste home, 6r the Squire will be waiting
for his dinner."
She called her husband that sometimes in fun,
just as my mamma calls my papa if she wants to
tease him. So they scrambled up all the things,
and bundled them into the donkey-cart, but in-
stead of sending it on again, Mrs. Gardner told
the boy who was driving it to keep as near them
as he could. That was on account of the buns
in case they met any hoppers; and the curious
thing was, that no sooner did they get out into
the lane than they saw another donkey-cart very
like their own coming towards them. Mrs. Russell
said she was quite sure the travellers would think
they too were hoppers, for they had torn their
gowns, and the boys were in a shocking mess, of
course; and they were all sunburnt, and hot, and
tired, though it had been so happy. But the
hoppers knew that they were not poor people, and


___~_I ___ _I__ __ __


_ __ _I_ ____1_ _C I_~__









II.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 69


that they
themselves


had only


been playing


do every day, and


at what they


don't consider such


a treat.


So one woman, carrying


a nice little rosy boy


with bright


black eyes, came up, and


asked


drop of milk


"for the childer."


Polly's


mamma stopped


the donkey-cart


her the


big


bottle


of milk,


which was not


half empty, and


all the rest of the


buns, so


childer" must have had a good supper that night.


" How


should like


to be a hopper,


Mamma,"


sighed Polly.


" Well,


dear, next


well, you shall


birthday, please God,


go hopping


instead


if all's


of having


tea


in Stock Wood," said Mrs. Gardner.


" Oh, thank


you, Mamma; that will


be some-


thing delightful to think of all


birthday,"


the time until next


said Polly.


She wanted to tell the boys


of the


plan, but


they were not to be seen anywhere just


then; so


the two ladies, and Violet, and Polly walked quietly


good


lady


for a


gave


the


and


"the







70 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


on. After


they got out of the lane they


to a field- which led them into another
with high banks, and rocks, and caves; but
they were crossing this field, such a sp.
picture seemed to lie spread out before
that Violet stopped, and said, "Look
Polly; isn't it all beautiful ?" And so it
very beautiful, just like what Mamma and
the other evening coming home, only she
it was damp, and we must not stop and
at it any longer. In front of them a


came
lane,
whilst
lendid
them,
there,
:was,
I saw
said
look
crop


of late corn had
streaks across
much corn, and
had been able
beneath. Then, 1
to them, was a
vines hiding all


arbours


been cut, and lay
the .green field.
the grass or th.
to grow very gr
beyond that again,
large hop garden,
the bare poles, an(


and bowers


as they


trailed


in soft yellow
There wasn't
e young wheat
een and thick
but still close
with the hop-
d making little
d from one to


the other, and
hops hanging


such a lot
on the


of little, young, pale green
vines! The only things









II.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 71

you could see behind the hop-gardens were woods


and low hills, some purple


and


some


behind them again a beautiful sky shone.


bluish; but


The sun


was ju
Violet


st


going down below one of


and Polly could look


the hills,


so


at its bright yellow


rays if they


tilted


Like "Jerusalem the
thought, and she and
whilst they looked at


their hats over their


Golden,"


I (I


Violet spoke


all the


glory


mean


eyes.
Polly)


in whispers,
and beauty


before them.
"Don't let


us stop


and see it fade away,"


said Polly, softly;


"let us always think of the sun


going


to bed


on my birthday like


that."


So she


took Violet's


hand,


and they ran on until


overtook Mrs. Russell and Mrs. Gardner, who were
just entering the lane.


Violet


knew what trickified


creatures


boys are,


and


as she did not see


" Where


are those


boys,


them


in front,


Mamma ?


I'm


they're


going


to play us a trick."


While


was speaking, down came a large


rock, rolling


they


said,
sure


she






72 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


and bumping


into the


narrow


road


before


them.


The ladies turned


quite


pale, as


well they might,


for if they had been the least bit nearer,


some


would
heard


have


been


a scream, but


crushed.


Harry


They
called


thought


they


out directly,


"Don't be frightened, mother, it is quite an accident;


we never meant


to hurt or frighten you.


We only


intended to jump down into the road ourselves."


" But how did


the rock give way ?"


asked Mrs.


Gardner.


"Is


no one hurt ?"


Then


minute she cried,


"Where is Willy ?"


for she knew


how naughty


and troublesome


the lad


Willy a]
the rock


answered, and they


had fallen.


went


There, in


to look where


the dust,


between


it and


the bank, lay Master


Willy,


very white, and


quite quiet, as if he had been asleep.


It's a mercy,


as Nurse


says,


the rock had not fallen


on him,


for if it had, he


must


have


been


crushed


as flat


as a spider;
as d


but he


had only lost


his balance and


tumbled
the edge.


down, after


They


having


picked


ig pushed
him up,


the rock


some


over


carrying


one


the


next


was.


No









II.] TEA IN THE WOODS. 73


his head, and some hi
into a cottage which


s heels;
happen


and they took him
d to be near, and


laid him on the bed.


After


he had


drunk


some water, and
and nose and r


washed


nouth,


the dust out of his


he


ears


soon got well enough


to walk,
say much


but he was very su
, for he was vexed


ilky and


at having


would


not


tumbled


down
ening


and hurt himself,


the ladies


instead


and covering


That's what he meant to do.


of only fright-


them
Even


with dust.
if he had


been a real


boy, I shouldn't


have been sorry for


but Polly was


actually sorry because


was her brother,


and also because


she


was such


a nice little thing.
It's nearly time


for


my tea now, so that must


be the end of Polly's


birthday.


Perhaps she is a


real little


girl,


and I may meet her some day.


ever I- do, I must try and remember how


If


she had


tea in Stock Wood,
case she doesn't kn


and tell her all about


ow.


him ;


he


it,


in















CHAPTER


JOE


III.


GURGLES.


ONCE upon a time a boy called


father and
one down


Joe


mother in a little cottage


there


where


lived
just


old Mrs. Fletcher


with his
like that


lives.


Let
fat,


me see what


sort of


think; and he must


because
least, I


he


know


was always


Franky


Davis


a boy Joe


have


had


was.


a big
down.


tumbling


is always


Rather


head,


At


tumbling


over everything,


and they


say


it is because


a big


head.


Joe


wasn't


at all


a bad boy,


but, stupid,


very stupid;


and his being


so stupid


made


-Dame


didn't


him do


Gurgles


think


such funny


as she
funny,
fell flat


them


harvest supper he


things.


Joe's


was always


though.


down,


When


mother


called-


at the


over nothing


at


has


he









CH. III.] O7E GURGLES. 75


with the great


big


beer-jug


in his hand, just


as he was going to


put it on the table, every-


laughed


except his sister Patience,


whose


new gown was all stained and spoilt with the beer.


His father,


the old farmer,


did not mind


much,


because
harvest


he


was in such a good temper at his


having


been all got in without a drop


rain from first to last; he only went to draw some


more beer himself in another jug,


of course, broken


for


Joe had,


the one he had been carrying.


He gave Joe a little kick with his foot as he passed,


-not to


hurt him, you know, but just in fun, and


said, "Get up,


some


boy;


fine day, and I


insteadd o'


my joogs.


thee'll tumble once too often
break that big head o' thine
'That was the way Farmer


Gurgles


talked.


But the dame looked


terribly


cross


at Joe, and


his bones


cried, "If he would but break


'stead o' my crockery it would be a good


job !"


Fancy


one's own


mother wishing


one to


hurt oneself!


It is quite dreadful


to think


Joe picked himself up, feeling quite stunned


all,


body


of


of.


and







76 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


unhappy.


His mother's


cross words


hurt him


much


as if she had hit him


ever so hard,


he first


picked


himself


up sorrowfully,


and then


the pieces of the


jug afterwards.


Joe had


a ridi-


culous


way of feeling himself


all


over with


great
hurt ;
stood


flat hand, open, like


and he must


there


this, to


have looked


with the handle


see if he


were


very foolish as he


of the jug


in


one


hand, patting his
to see where the


big head carefully with the other,


new bump was.


Of


course


Joe's


was a mass of bumps, and his


shins


and his


elbows and knees were always


black and blue,


nobody used to be


sorry for


him, or


offered


to do


anything


to


make


him well when


he hurt him-


His father


would


say that he


meant


to get


the carpenter to make a big go-cart foir Joe to learn


to walk in,


and he


pretended


that the boy


ought


to be tied into his chair like the new baby.


However,


party, they did


tumble;


as the harvest


not laugh


and his father,


supper


so very


when


he


was a sort of


much


came


at


back


as


and


his


head


self.


but


Joe's
from









III.] JOE GURGLES. 77


the cellar,


said, quite


good-naturedly


" Best go and clean thee'sself,


have


a bit o'


supper."


lad, and


But Joe could


for him,
coom and
not help


thinking


of his mother's


cross


look when


wished


he would


break


himself


instead


of her


and he shook


his big


head and


slowly and sorrowfully away.


He did


not go


his own little room, as I should do if I were very


sorry about


anything, because he could only


up to it by a ladder in one corner of the kitchen


where they were all having


their supper, and the


steps were so narrow and so steep that he very


slipped


off them.


He thought


that would


never do now, so he crept away out at the


door, past old Growler the mastiff, and


so into


rick-yard, where all the new stacks were piled
smelling sweet and nice in the fresh, cool air.


the
up,


As he passed


Growler,


Joe stopped


and rubbed


his leg just to feel how the sore place on it was


getting on.


That had


been a very bad


indeed, because the doctor had


made it sore on


jugs,


she


went


to


get


often


back


place






78 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.

purpose. And it all came through Joe's tumbling
down. One evening, at the beginning of that very
summer, Dame Gurgles bade Joe go and fetch her
something out of the tool-house, which happened
to be near Growler's kennel. Joe was a very good-
natured boy, and always ready to run errands for
his mother, or anybody else. So the moment the
dame called out, "Just go and fetch me that peg
with the string round it, Joe, there's a good boy,"
Joe set off, best pace. But although it was not
really dark, nor anything like it, Joe never saw
Growler's long chain stretched tight across the
yard, for Growler himself had come out of his hot


kennel and was
chain would let
the chain, so he
came, flat on his
paved yard. T
worse when Gr
snap, and bit
trouser and all,


gnawing a bone as far away as
him get. However Joe did not
caught his foot in it, and down
face, with a dreadful bump, on
'hat was bad enough, but it
owler flew at him with a sav
the piece right out of his


--not a very big


bit,


his
see
he
the
was
age
leg,


you know,









III.] JOE GURGLES. 79

because I think by the time Growler had taken the


trouser


in his teeth, he found out it was Joe; but


big enough to


hurt horribly.


imagine


how Joe


roared, and


the dame


roared


too, and called out


" Mad dog," until everybody


running out to see.


She wanted


Growler


to be shot that very moment, and


apron over her head, and
sorry," but Joe must be


she threw her


declared she was main


smothered


between two


feather-beds directly.


Joe howled worse than ever


when he heard this, of course; and they all made


such a noise among them,


that the farmer came in


from the hay-field to know what was the matter.
He would not hear of either Growler or Joe being
what he called put out of the way," but he sent


for the doctor, and


red-hot


the doctor made a


in the fire, and burned Joe's


Growler had


almost as


bit him.


bad


it pretty well,


bit of iron


leg


where


Poor Joe thought that was


as being smothered; but
and his father gave him


he bore
a bright


shilling to comfort him.


quite


came


You


may







80 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


was quite natural


that Joe should


stop and


rub his leg, but doing
member how unkind his
him, and how anxious
put him out of the wa
feel comforted when he
the hay- and corn-stacks
whilst he was doing this;
once he caught his toe


so only made him
Smother had been
she had seemed
y. Joe did not e
had walked round
He fell down tx
once over a rake,


against


a stone.


re-
to
to
ven
all
vice
and
He


would have liked
and go to sleep
summer-time, but
now for that. The
up a tall ladder r
centre stack, the
floating. It was
thought it would v
he remembered th
hold on by, so he
His father had o:


to creep into the loose hay
there, as he often did in the
it was all too tightly packed
e next best thing was to climb
ight on to the top of the big
one from which the flag was
so neatly thatched that Joe
rery likely be slippery, but then
Lere would be the flag-staff to


made up his
often advised


mind
him n


to
ot


venture.
to climb


up high


places,


saying,


"Thee'll coom toombling


It








III.] JOE GURGLES. 81


doon,


Joe,


my lad,


and thee'll


break


that thick


head o' thine, once


and for all."


But although


Joe remembered this warning, he felt so unhappy
he didn't mind it; not out of regular naughtiness,


you know, but only because he


thought it could


not matter to anyone whether he broke his head,


" once and for all," or not.
I do believe," thought I


Mother would be glad,
)oor Joe dismally, as he


sat up there on the top
round the stout stick


of the rick, with


from which


one arm


the red hand-


kerchief


was fluttering, and his cheek pressed hard


against the pale.


He had dropped his


he was getting up the ladder, so he sat


cap whilst
there bare-


headed, with


the cool breeze


blowing


on his


forehead


and his smarting


"I wish I


had brought a bit of


bread and


cheese up in my pocket,"


he thought;


hungry."


That was the curious way


Joe had


saying he was very


hungry.


Franky


Davis


like that.


Joe watched the great big round moon


come slowly up from the


edge of the


field where


eyes.


hot


" I'm


main


of


talks







82 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


mowers


had cut through


the hen partridge


sitting


close


on her nest.


" Pretty


brown


thing,"


thought,


" she'd


rather


ha' been


cut to bits


as she
wonder,
she'd he
Doctor


was,


if


than


go


one on


ave a down on


says


ain't nowt


I'll


grow t(


the matter


for to leave


had a big
it like Moth,
o my head,
wi' it; but


her
'ed,


eggs.


whether


has on


me?


and that there


Sit du get


me


into trouble every day of


that


jug gone


to-day,


my life,


and I


sure-ly.


so careful


There's
where I


stepped
thinking
because


and all." But Joe could


these


sad thoughts


he felt ever so much


very


cooler


not


long,


go


on


partly


and better


for the fresh


air and the sight


of that beautiful


calm
cause
every


moon, so quiet


he kept
minute.


getting


over there,


more


and


and partly


more


be-


hungry


as he


was making


up


his mind


to


come


down


from


the top


of the rick, he


saw one of


men come


out and look


about


by each


stack,


as if he


were


searching


for something.


" What


the


Joe


Just


the








iIi.] JOE GURGLES. 33

can he want ?" Joe said to himself. "Why, it's Ned
Frampton; Father must have sent him for summut."
And so the farmer had, but poor Joe little knew
what. Ned had come to fetch the ladder away; he
had no idea that Joe was perched up on the top
of the rick, holding on to the flag-staff, and when he
found what he was looking for, he just shouldered
the ladder, although it was dreadfully awkward
to carry, and staggered away with it. He did
not come round to where Joe could have seen
him, because it was shorter to go in at the back
door; so after Joe had waited a little while, ex-
pecting to see him come round into the moon-
light, he guessed rightly that he must have found
what he wanted, and gone in by the other way.
All that side of the rick was in deep, dark
shadow, so black that Joe felt quite frightened
when he left off looking at the place which the
moon made so bright and light, and he groped
his way as well as he could over the slippery
thatch, holding on to all the ropes as tight as
G 2







RIBBON STORIES.


CHAP.


possible,


to where he


had left the


could not well manage to look


side,


but he felt with


ladder.


down over


his feet for the top


He
the


rung


whilst


he held on to the


thatch.


"Now I've


it!" cried Joe quite out loud;


and


as he said the


words


he loosened his


hold


a little, and


then let


go altogether.


But no ladder


was there,


could


not catch


hold


of anything,


though


he stretched


out his hands,


like this,


over, and


head


came


'strordinary


there.


ground,
through
middle


No,


bump
thing


against


is,


the ground;


that he didn't


his head made a


and Joe


went


the field, until
of the world.


head


he


but the


stop


hole through
first through


got right


There was such


even
the
and


into the
a hard


piece there, that he


stopped,


couldn't


get any further, so


and got down upon his


he


feet somehow,


and stood up


rubbing his head tremendously,


it hurt


a good


deal,


you know,


after


having


bored


such


a deep,


84


got
goL


Joe


he


went


and


over,


and


and


so


over,


until


his


deep


for


hole.


_ __ I_


__









III.] 70E GURGLES. 85


At first
see if we


he saw
come


nothing but sparks-just as we
bump on our heads when we


are skating, or ai
little while he sav
little lamps on tl
funny little men,
with red jackets ar
bright lamps faste


anything like that; but after a
v that the sparks were really
ie top of men's heads. Such
too! Quite black and shiny,
id loose red trousers; and these
ned on their heads instead of


hats. They were as busy as be
there, and everywhere; but ve
and happy. Joe's first thought,
bing his head rather dolefully,
had a lamp like that on my 1
I shouldn't tumble down any
He must have said it out lou
knew where he was he saw a
light flaming at the tip of his
of shrill, but very sweet, voices


many as
welcome
lamps as


you like, Joe Gurgles!


down
ever


here,
you


and you
choose.


:es, darting here,
*ry good-natured
as he sat rub-


was,
lead;
more
d, for
little
nose,
called
You


shall have
Come and


"I wish I
I am sure
if I had."
before he
spark ol
and a lot
out, "As
are kindly


as many
look at






86 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.

yourself!" Joe felt something tickling his leg,
and there were a heap of tiny lamp-men
tugging away at his boot-lace, trying to haul
him up by it. When Joe understood what they
meant he got up, and all the lamps flitted
before him like so many Will o'the Wisps, and
arranged themselves in a line on each side of
a great black, bright place, which served as a
looking-glass. So Joe marched up as brave as
possible (for he could not be frightened when he
was so much bigger than all the lamp-men put
together), and he found himself opposite to the sort
of wall. It looked like a large slab of coal, only
it was polished until it shone as brightly as his
mother's brass candlesticks; and in this funny kind
of looking-glass he could see himself quite well.
They had hung him all over lamps, indeed!
Besides the one on his nose-which he could see
by shutting one eye and squinting at it, so-
he had a dear little lamp hanging like an ear-ring
to each of his big ears, and one dangled from his








II.] 70E GURGLES. 87

chin, and there were such a lot in his hair! Here,
there, and everywhere; wherever they found a
lock of hair sticking up by itself-and Joe's hair
grew all over his head in that manner-there
they hung a lamp which shone beautifully, and
made Joe think himself a very fine fellow indeed.
" I'm powerful smart, now," said Joe, in his quiet,
drawling way, just like Franky Davis; "I could
see through a brick wall now, I should think.
Whatever do you need such a lot of lamps
down here for, I wonder!" Well, you know, if
Joe had not been a very stupid boy he would
not have asked that question, for of course it
must be quite, quite dark in the middle of the
world; but he never thought of that. However, the
busy little lamp-men were very good-humoured
(that was because they were so busy; Mamma
says idle people are much more likely to be
cross and nasty than those who have got plenty
of useful work to do), and did not feel at all
affronted at Joe's questions. They only said,






8 RIBBON STORIES. [CHAP.


speaking


all at once, but even then


not so loud


do,


" We


our work


must


by,


have


of course."


light to


"Oh, I


do our play


see !"


said


Joe, thinking himself very sharp indeed.


" You're


a lot of little


colliers.


I always


did wish to


down
gone
chaps


a mine, and
and done it.


now I
What


s'pose


I've been


a queer little


and


lot of


you be, sure-ly !"


"Colliers, indeed !" screamed


all the


lamp-men,


but in a very softly scream; "no, indeed ;


is much


more


important than colliers,


our work
although


are bigger than


we are.


Just now


see the off-gang,


but when


it is our


turn to


go on you shall come


with us


and see what


Ah! it would


be a poor


business


for all


of you


idle people


among ourselves and


they


all shook


quivered
dazzled
he asked.


their


and jumped


nd giddy.


up above if we ever


didn't
heads


about,


fell


work regular;"


so


that the


and Joe felt


out
and


lamps
quite


"Are you going anywhere ?"


"Yes, of course," they cried.


"We


as I
and


go


they


do.


you


we


are




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